In Search Of Iguassu—Rio to Buenos Aires

Valid for all trips departing January 1st, 2014 - December 14th, 2015 Last Updated:
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Introduction

Dance your way through the best of South America's colourful cities. Kick off your adventure in Rio where you're free to explore the carnival atmosphere or soak up rays. You'll enjoy time outdoors and on the beach at Ilha Grande and connect with the land at an estancia stay in Uruguay. Best of all, we'll fly over to Iguassu Falls for more time to explore the immense cascades. With accommodation and transport arranged by a CEO, this trip offers great value and is the perfect way to discover South America's unique vibe.

  • Revel in the energy of Rio
  • Wander around colonial Paraty
  • Sip a caipirinha on the beach in southern Brazil
  • Marvel at Iguassu Falls
  • Discover the charm of Uruguay at an estancia
  • Sample the food and wine of Buenos Aires.
Duration: 17 days
Start/Finish City: Rio de Janeiro to Buenos Aires
Service Level: Basic
  • Excellent value, amazing prices, quality experiences
  • Simple and clean hotels, guesthouses and hostels chosen for location and character
  • Affordable public and private transport for maximum cultural interaction
  • Plenty of optional activities tailored to your interests and budget
Physical Grading: 3
Trips may include activities like hiking, biking, rafting or kayaking. No sweat, right?
Travel Style: Yolo
Adventures for 18 to thirty somethings

Designed for young, budget-minded travellers, Yolo trips maximize time and money by squeezing the most out of a destination. This ain't your typical big-bus tour, though. Small groups, insider access and personal freedom to follow the whim of the moment are the order of the day, every day.

Trip Type: Small Group
Group trips average 12 travellers per departure, depending on the adventure. The maximum is usually no more than 16, but some can be smaller or bigger, depending on the trip. Check individual trips for details.

Itinerary

Route map for In Search Of Iguassu—Rio to Buenos Aires (JRB)

Day 1 Rio de Janeiro

Today is an arrival day, so there are no planned activities; we will be leaving Rio by midday on Day 2. Our journey sets out from the most famous of Brazilian cities and one of the most memorable cities in the world, Río de Janeiro. Enjoy any free time by taking an optional city tour or exploring the wonders that this city has to offer from our centrally-located hostel in Copacabana. The hostel has private rooms with private bathrooms for travellers, but please note that the common areas are shared with other guests of the hostel.

"God made the world in six days, the seventh he devoted to Rio," so say the Cariocas, residents of this beautiful city. This is a densely packed city of over 9 million inhabitants, whose economic foundations lie in the cultivation of sugar cane and gold mining. Referred to as the “cidade maravilhosa” (Marvellous City), few cities enjoy such a dramatic setting as Rio. Brilliant, white beaches at Copacabana and Ipanema, deep blue waters of the Atlantic, the luminescent green of Guanabara Bay, the bare blue slopes of the Sugar Loaf combine to make Rio unique. Standing over it all, atop Corcovado, is the huge statue of Christ the Redeemer, the best place from which to appreciate the city. Superb panoramic views of the city and area can also be found from the top of the Pao do Açucar (Sugar Loaf), reached by cable car. Head to some of the famous beaches, and prepare yourself for an experience unlike anything else on Earth.

Although the Portuguese first sailed and entered the bay, it was the French who first established a settlement in the area, logging Brazil wood along the coast. Their first permanent settlement lasted a brief five years, when they were attacked and driven from the area by the encroaching Portuguese. A series of skirmishes ensued, with the Tomaio people allied with the French against the Portuguese.

In 1567 the Portuguese began construction of a fortified town to repel any invaders, naming it Sao Sebastiao do Rio de Janeiro. Amassing wealth with the gold rush of Minas Gerais, in the early 18th century Rio became Brazil’s most important city and a great temptation to the French who, in 1710, waged war against the Portuguese and held the city for a sizeable gold ransom. Again in the 19th century, under threat of Napoleon’s invasion, what remained of the Portuguese monarchy fled to Brazil where they set up court in grand style; many of today’s older structures date from this period.

The gold rush was followed by a coffee boom in the mid-1800s and the wealth generated led to the city’s initial modernization. Replacing Salvador de Bahia as the colonial capital in 1763, the city remained the capital until 1960, when it was replaced by Brasilia. Today, the city is a magnet for tourists who come to walk the beaches of Ipanema and Copacabana, and generally partake in the Carioca zest for life. Many ascend the Sugarloaf Mountain (Pao do Açucar), whose image is nearly synonymous with Rio and Carnival. Modern Rio is perhaps best known for the contrasting images offered by the favelhas (shanty towns), and the glitz and glamour preferred by the Samba schools and their Carnival celebrations.

Day 2-4 Ilha Grande (1B)

From Rio, we head south along the Atlantic coast to the port of Angra dos Reis, and onward by ferry to Ilha Grande, with almost 100 beaches for you to choose from. Known for its beauty, the island offers other activities for the visitors: surfing, hikes, diving,biking and snorkling. You can also take a boat tour to visit some of the beaches and enjoy the scenery while drinking a caipirinha; Brazil's national drink.

Ilha grande truly defines what we imagine when thinking of a tropical beach paradise. Cars on the island are limited to essential services only (fire, ambulance etc), it is largely undeveloped and there are huge amounts of trails leading to deserted white sand beaches.

Once a favoured hangout for Pirates, slave traders and up until the late 20th century a political prison. Now Ilha Grande is a pristine remnant of Brazil’s atlantic rainforest. The local fauna and flora in Ilha Grande, a Nacional Patrimony protected area, are extremely diverse. The state park was created in 1971 and encompasses 4.500 hectares of wilderness. Mountain range, coastal, mangrove and prairie vegetation are all found here, along with an astonishing collection of bird life, including parrots, woodpeckers, Brazilian thrushes and saracuras. There are also different kinds of monkeys, squirrels, armadillos, pacas, hedgehogs and snakes, as well as endangered species such as the Alouatta Fusca, generally known as Bugio monkey. .

Day 2 Travel:
Rio to Ilha Grande
Approximate distance: 151 Km
Approximate travel time: 3.5 hours (1 hour by ferry)

Day 5-6 Paraty (1B)

Further down the mainland coast we encounter the quaint colonial town of Paraty, an architectural gem famous for its churches. Take a trip to visit an old Fazenda to sample cachaca or enjoy a boat ride to visit some of the many secluded beaches outside of town.

Paraty is a lovely colonial town. Sitting on Brazil's southeastern coast, it lies on the border of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo states, and it is a popular among those who want to get away from it all —Brazilians and visitors alike. Considered one of the world's most important examples of Portuguese colonial architecture by UNESCO, the historic centre is a well-preserved national historic monument, and today has been closed to vehicles to preserve its laid-back colonial ambience. During high tide, the portuguese cobblestone streets are partly flooded by seawater, adding to the fairy tale atmosphere.

Founded in 1531, the original settlement was on the opposite side of the river, where a church was built to their patron "St. Roque." Around 1640, the Indians who used to live here were driven away and the town moved to where it stands now. The founders named it Nossa Senhora dos Remédios ( Our Lady of the Medicines) as the patron saint, and they built the main church in her honour. Enlarged and remodelled over the years, the church is now the focal point of the annual Festa de Nossa Senhora dos Remédios on September 8. The festival has been celebrated for over 300 years since a wealthy and reverent benefactor, Maria Jácome de Mello, donated the land to the town for the church, requesting only an annual mass in return. The mass has grown into a procession of the wooden effigy of the Virgen though the town, adorned with gold and silver jewellery.

In the 1700's, when the mines of Minas Gerais were pouring out gold, the perfect bay of Paraty was a busy port, the second most important in Brazil during the ‘Golden Century.’ The best pinga or cachaça (sugar cane liquor) of Brazil was produced here and the name Paraty became synonymous with the liquor. Later, coffee was brought from the valley of Paraiba to be shipped to Portugal, sparking another economic boom. In 1888 with the end of the slavery, Paraty became almost forgotten in time, and a large exodus left only a population of around 600, a considerable difference from the 16000 when the town was in its prime. In 1954, a road was opened linking the town to the inland through the valley of Paraiba, but it was not until 1973-75,with the opening of the highway BR-101, that Paraty’s rebirth as a tourist town began. It was declared a national monument in 1966.

Paraty's bay is filled with over 65 tropical islands and dozens of beaches, each offering something different, and all covered with vegetation that remains lush and colourful year-round. The water of the bay is always the right temperature for swimming, diving and snorkeling. The national parks that encircle the town are filled with trails, wildlife and waterfalls. Hiking or horseback riding, for the sports minded, or a jeep or van tour are both excellent ways to appreciate this natural wilderness.

Day 5 Travel:
Ilha Grande to Paraty
Approximate distance: 100 Km
Approximate travel time: 2.5 hours (1 hour by ferry)

Day 7-9 Iguassu Falls (1B)

We skip the 19-hour journey by land and put a flight in from Sao Paulo to give you more time to enjoy the next spot - Foz do Iguaçu, or Iguassu falls, which borders Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina.

In order to see the falls properly, you need to view them from both Brazilian and Argentinean sides. The Brazilian side offers the grand overview and, the Argentine side, a closer look. The best time of the year to see them is from August to November, as from May to July you may not be able to approach the swollen waters on the catwalks. We include a visit to both sides and you will spend a couple of days taking advantage of the many opportunities and activities, which include an exhilarating optional boat tour at the falls or a trip to the bird sanctuary on the Brazilian side.

The torrential Iguassu River crosses the State of Paraná in Southern Brazil from East to West. A few kilometres before its junction with the Paraná River forms one of the most splendorous natural beauties of the world: Iguassu Falls. Over 2.7 kilometres long and an average flow of 1.750 m3/s, this wonder is located in a very special place. The contrast between the green of the vegetation and the dark colour of the basalt rocks with whirring waters plunging from a 72 metre high cliff is magical. At Iguassu there are 275 falls in all, spread over a 3-km area, some over 80m (262.4 ft) in height, making these cataracts wider than Victoria Falls and higher than Niagara! It should come as no surprise that UNESCO declared the region a World Heritage Site in 1986.

Originally “discovered” in 1541 by the Spaniard Juan Alvar Nuñez, he named the falls Saltos de Santa María. The name we use today means “great waters” in the Tupi-Guarani tongue. The falls are protected by two National Parks—one in Brazil and another in Argentina. Tours utilise trails and catwalks adapted to the landscape of the area, and walking is easy for all ages.

Film buffs will remember that Iguassu was the site of several scenes from the film “The Mission.” Not far from the falls, the ruins of the Jesuit missions of the era can still be visited on a day trip. Also of interest in the area is Itaipú, the largest hydroelectric complex in the world. Experience an exhilarating optional boat tour or helicopter trip for a bird's eye view, or simply marvel at nature’s breadth and the roar of the falls.

Note: If you have booked the Iguassu Falls Boat Ride Theme Pack, you will do it on Day 8 or 9 when visiting the Argentine side of the falls.

On the afternoon of Day 9, we head off for a long overnight journey to the Estancia.

Puerto Iguazu to Gualeguaychú
Approximate distance: 1100 Km
Approximate travel time: 15 hours

Day 10-11 Estancia Stay (1B,2L,2D)

We cross into Uruguay for our first stop - a local ranch, known in the region as an Estancia.

We spend a day at the estancia getting into rural life. Learn about the historical roots of the region, participate in some of the farming activities, go for a hike, or sit back and sip on the wines of the region as you take in the local Uruguayan life.

Travel from bus stop near Gualeguaychú to Estancia
Approximate distance: 250 km
Approximate travel time: 4 hours (including border crossing)

Day 12-14 Montevideo/Colonia (3B)

As we continue through Uruguay, we spend some time in the capital city, Montevideo, by far the country's largest city. Founded by the Spanish in 1726, over half of the population -about 1 million- lives here. The city dominates the commercial and cultural life of the nation. It's very lively and modern with many architecturally interesting buildings. Yet, the city also maintains a very quiet atmosphere. There are several good museums not to be missed, as well as some very good beaches just outside the city.

Lastly, travel along the shores of the Rio de la Plata to the charming colonial city of Colonia Del Sacramento. Experience the relaxed, pleasant Uruguayan culture and stroll down its cobble-stoned streets before crossing into Argentina.

Accommodation in Colonia may be multi-share.

Day 12 Travel:
Salto to Montevideo
Approximate distance: 498 Km
Estimated travel time: 6 hours

Day 14 Travel:
Montevideo to Colonia
Approximate distance: 177 Km
Approximate travel time: 2.5 hours

Day 15-16 Buenos Aires

Cross the Rio de la Plata by ferry to reach the dynamic city of Buenos Aires. There is much to do in this vibrant metropolis, with plenty of museums, theatres, and historical areas. Known as the 'Paris of the Americas', Buenos Aires is full of life. Be sure to visit the districts of La Boca, Recoleta and San Telmo. Or catch a tango show at one of the many famous tanguerías or tango houses. Wander the pedestrian walkways and see some dancing in the streets. Whatever you do, Buenos Aires is sure to leave lasting memories.

The capital city of Argentina is the ultimate cosmopolitan city, and many travellers find that it has more in common with the cities of Europe than the rest of South America. Nearly 40 per cent of Argentina’s -33 million citizens- live in Greater Buenos Aires, and the Porteños are justifiably proud of their home. The city is comprised of a number of distinct neighbourhoods, some of which have become top tourist draws. For many, the highlight of their time in the capital is a visit to San Telmo, for the weekend antiques market and street artists’ displays. La Boca was originally settled by the successive waves of immigrants that contribute to the capital’s unique character. Its brightly coloured walls and buildings draw Porteños and tourists alike. Posh Recoleta, with its cafés, museums and cemetery, is a pleasant place to spend an afternoon.

During colonial days, Buenos Aires was the seat of the Viceroy of La Plata. Almost completely rebuilt since the turn of the century, the heart of the city is the Plaza de Mayo, with the historic Cabildo (Town Hall), where the Independence movement was first planned, the Casa Rosada (Government Palace) and the Cathedral, where San Martín, the father of Argentine independence, is buried.

When you are done exploring, settle your weary feet and enjoy a drink in one of the many sidewalk cafés and restaurants, and you will begin to understand the contemplative Argentine way of life. Buenos Aires is also your chance to try the succulent bifé and parrilladas, so dig in and enjoy!

Day 15 Travel:
Colonia to Buenos Aires
Approximate travel time: 1 hour by ferry

Day 17 Buenos Aires

Depart at any time.

What's Included

Entrance and visit to the Argentine and Brazilian sides of Iguassu Falls. Activities while at the estancia in Uruguay. Internal flight. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.

Highlights

Revel in the energy of Rio, wander around colonial Paraty, sip a caipirinha on the beach in southern Brazil, marvel at Iguassu Falls, discover the charm of Uruguay at an estancia, sample the food and wine of Buenos Aires.

Dossier Disclaimer

The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary.

VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.

Itinerary Disclaimer

While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Aboard expedition trips visits to research stations depend on final permission.

Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.

Important Notes

1. Please note that this tour combines with other G Adventures tours. As such, the staff and some travel companions on your tour may have previously been traveling together with G Adventures, prior to Day 1 of your tour. Likewise, some staff and travel companions may be continuing together on another G Adventures tour, after your trip concludes.

2. Please note that during time of South-American festivals and High Season (particularly Carnival and New Years), accommodation on this tour may be multi-share.

3. Looking to add to your experience? Check out our Theme Packs! Specially designed for travellers with unique interests, theme packs are optional add-ons to your G adventures trip that make your adventure more you-centric. Theme Packs must be booked prior to departure, please see details in our optional activities field and ask you sales CEO.

Group Leader Description

All G Adventures group trips are accompanied by one of our Chief Experience Officers (CEO), a G Adventures representative, or an expedition team. The aim of the CEO is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. We also use local guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting- we think it's the best of both worlds.

Group Size Notes

Max 16, avg 10.

Meals Included

7 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners.

Meals

Eating is a big part of traveling. G Adventures understands the importance of breakfast to start your day, we strive to include a basic breakfast wherever possible. A typical breakfast may include toast, coffee and tea, however this may vary depending on the city. Should breakfast not be included, your CEO can suggest some local options.

Travelling with G Adventures you experience the vast array of wonderful food that is available out in the world. Generally meals are not included in the trip price when there is a choice of eating options, to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat. It also gives you more budgeting flexibility, though generally food is cheap. Our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. There is no obligation to do this though. Your CEO will be able to suggest favourite restaurants during your trip. While trekking in remote regions etc. food is included, plentiful and made of fresh local ingredients.

Note: Food is generally considered to be more expensive in Argentina and Brazil than in most other South American Countries.

Meal Budget

Allow USD $450-$500 for meals not included.

Transport

Public bus, minivan, taxis, ferry, walking

Solo Travellers

We believe single travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and do not involve a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and single travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.

Accommodation

Simple hotels (12 nts, some multi-share), hostel (1 nt), estancia/ranch (2 nts, multi-share), overnight bus (1 nt).

My Own Room Exceptions

Night 9: overnight bus, Nights 10-11: Estancia.

Joining Hotel

Che Lagarto Santa Clara
Santa Clara 304,
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Phone: +55 21 3495-3133

Please note, the February 21st, May 29th, and July 31st, 2014 departures will commence at the following hotel:

Che Lagarto Anita Garibaldi
Rua Anita Garibaldi, 87
Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro
Brazil
Tel: +55 21 2256-2776

Please note that the April 21st, 2014 departure will commence at the following hotel:

Hotel Bandeirantes
Rua Barata Ribeiro 548
Copacabana
Rio de Janeiro
Brazil
55 21 2548-6252

Joining Instructions

Galeao International Airport is a 30 to 45 minute drive from our joining hotel. There are many private taxi companies with booths inside the building where you can pay a set rate for a taxi to Copacabana (approximately $50 USD), thus avoiding the confusion outside the airport. There is also an airport bus, called ‘Real’ (approximately $9 USD) which will drop you off at the place of your choice along the route. The closest point to the Santa Clara is at the corner of Barata Ribeiro and the street Figueiredo Magalhaes. From here to the hotel is quite close. You can flag down one of the many official yellow taxis in the street to get the rest of the way to the hotel (approximately $5 USD).

There is a money exchange in the Banco do Brazil on the third floor of the international arrivals area, which is open 24 hours.

If you are arriving from abroad and have paid in advance for an arrival transfer, a G Adventures representative will meet you at the airport. If no one is there, take a public taxi to the hotel and we will reimburse you. If you have not paid for an arrival transfer, the best way to get into town is by public taxi. If your taxi driver does not speak English and you do not speak Portuguese, simply show driver the hotel address to simplify communications.

Please note that Day 1 is an arrival day and no activities have been planned, so you may arrive at any time. Similarly the last day is a departure day during which no activities are planned. Your Chief Experience Officer (CEO) will leave a Welcome Note with details of the Welcome Meeting time on Day 1. It is usually around 7pm. In this meeting you will meet other tour participants and receive information about general and specific aspects of the trip. If you arrive late, s/he will leave you a message detailing what time and where you should meet the next morning.

PLEASE NOTE:

ARGENTINA'S "RECIPROCITY FEE":
Effective January 7, 2013 all US, Canadian and Australian citizens are required to pay a reciprocity tax in order to enter Argentina. This reciprocity tax must be paid in advance online with a credit card. Cash at the border or airport is not accepted.

ONLINE PAYMENT FORM:
https://virtual.provinciapagos.com.ar/ArgentineTaxes/

INSTRUCTIONS:
http://www.migraciones.gov.ar/pdf_varios/reciprocidad/Online_payment_instructions.pdf

COSTS:
US citizens: 160USD, valid for 10 years
Australian citizens: 100USD, valid for 1 year
Canadian citizens: 75USD for one entry and re-entries from bordering countries within 3 months; OR 150USD for a multiple entry visa valid for 5 years.

Arrival Complications

We don't expect any problems, and nor should you, but if for any reason you are unable to commence your trip as scheduled, as soon as possible please contact your starting point hotel, requesting that you speak to or leave a message for your CEO (if you are not on a group tour please refer to the emergency contact details provided in this dossier). If you are unable to get in touch with your leader, please refer to our emergency contact details.

If you have pre-booked an airport transfer and have not made contact with our representative within 30 minutes of clearing customs and immigration, we recommend that you make your own way to the Starting Point hotel. A taxi to the centre costs approximately $60 USD (90 BRL) and can be arranged from the official counter inside the Arrivals area. Please keep your receipt and your Chief Experience Officer or G Adventures Representative will refund the cost of the taxi. If your taxi driver does not speak English and you do not speak Portuguese, simply show driver the hotel address to simplify communications.

Emergency Contact

Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call either the G Adventures Local Representative (if one is listed below) or our G Adventures Local Office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.

AIRPORT TRANSFER 
If you have purchased an arrival through G Adventures or if an arrival transfer is included in the cost of your tour, please note that:

Your arrival transfer has been arranged based on flight information provided to us. If you are advised of a flight schedule change within 48 hours of your scheduled arrival time, we will do our best to rearrange your arrival transfer however we cannot guarantee this. If your arrival transfer does not arrive within 30 minutes after you have exited the arrivals area please take a taxi to your start point hotel. 

EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
G Adventures Office Buenos Aires, Argentina
During office hours (Weekdays 9am-6pm Local Time)
From outside Argentina: +54 11 5252 3602
From within Argentina, but outside of Buenos Aires: 011 5252 3602

After hours Emergency number
From outside Argentina: +54 9 11 3425 0380
From within Argentina, but outside of Buenos Aires: 15 3425 0380

G Adventures Local Representative (Rio)
Alessandra Feliciano
From Outside of Brazil: +55 21 99752 6086
If using Brazilian SIM card purchased outside or Rio: 031 21 99752 6086
If using Brazilian SIM card purchased in Rio: 99752 6086

If you are unable for any reason to contact our local office, please call the numbers listed below, which will connect you directly with our 24 hour Sales team, who will happily assist you.

Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Calls from UK: 0844 272 0000
Calls from Germany: 01805 70 90 30 00
Calls from Australia: 1 300 796 618
Calls from New Zealand: 0800 333 307
Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the UK: +1 416 260 0999

What to Take

Most people automatically assume that the weather is hot in South America, however this is not the case, and you may need warm cloths depending on the time of year you travel. We recommend the use of a duffel bag or backpack, whichever is easiest for you to carry. A good size daypack is also essential.

Checklist

- Passport (with photocopies)
- Travel insurance
- Airline tickets
- USD cash
- Credit or debit card (see personal spending money)
- G Adventures vouchers and dossier
- Any entry visas or vaccination certificates required
- Camera and film
- Reading/writing material
- Binoculars
- Cover for backpacks
- Pocket knife
- Concealable money belt
- Fleece top
- Windproof/waterproof jacket
- Small towel and swim wear
- 4 shirts/t-shirts
- Sun hat
- 1 pair of shorts
- 2 pairs of long trousers
- Sturdy walking shoes
- Sport sandals
- Sunblock
- Sunglasses
- Toiletries (biodegradable)
- Watch or alarm clock
- Water bottle
- Insect repellent
- Flashlight
- First-aid kit (should contain lip salve, Aspirin, Band Aids, anti-histamine, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, re-hydration powder, extra prescription drugs you may be taking)

Laundry

Laundry facilities are offered by some of our hotels for a charge. They often charge by item and it is quite expensive. There are many Laundromat services available along the way which charge by the kilo. Your CEO will inform when it is best to do laundry. There will be times when you may want to or have to do your own laundry so we suggest you bring non-polluting/biodegradable soap.

Visas

All countries require a valid passport (with a minimum 6 months validity). Contact your local embassy, or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements, or see your travel agent. IT'S YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO HAVE THE CORRECT TRAVEL DOCUMENTATION.

BRAZIL VISA
Americans, Canadians, Australians and some other nationalities need a tourist visa in order to enter Brazil. Please contact your local Brazilian Embassy to find out if you need to apply for one and for further details. If you are required to have a visa you will need to get one before entering Brazil, otherwise you will be refused entry. Processing fees and time frames depend on each country, but can take 2 weeks or longer, so we advise you to apply for it as early as possible.

COSTS:
US citizens: 160 USD
Australian Citizens: 35 USD
Canadian Citizens: 65 USD

ARGENTINA'S "RECIPROCITY FEE":
Effective January 7, 2013 all US, Canadian and Australian citizens are required to pay a reciprocity tax in order to enter Argentina. This reciprocity tax must be paid in advance online with a credit card. Cash at the border or airport is not accepted.

ONLINE PAYMENT FORM:
https://virtual.provinciapagos.com.ar/ArgentineTaxes/

INSTRUCTIONS:
http://www.migraciones.gov.ar/pdf_varios/reciprocidad/Online_payment_instructions.pdf

COSTS:
US citizens: 160USD, valid for 10 years
Australian citizens: 100USD, valid for 1 year
Canadian citizens: 75USD for one entry and re-entries from bordering countries within 3 months; OR 150USD for a multiple entry visa valid for 5 years.

This trip crosses the border between Brazil and Argentina on Day 8 of this tour, to go to the Argentine side of the falls, and again on Day 9. The border name is Paso Iguazu and borders the cities of Foz do Iguazu and Puerto Iguazu.

The second crossing is the border between Argentina and Uruguay on Day 10 of this tour. The border is between the cities of Gualeguaychu and Fray Bentos. The third crossing is the border between Uruguay and Argentina on Day 15 of this tour. The border name is at the boat terminal in Buenos Aires and borders the cities of Colonia and Buenos Aires.

Spending Money

Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.

Money Exchange

The currency in Argentina is the Argentine Peso (ARS), in Uruguay the Uruguayan Peso (UYU) and in Brazil, the Brazilian Real (BRL).

Credit cards and debit cards are very useful for cash advances. Visa cards are the most widely accepted cards. While ATMs are widely available, there are no guarantees that your credit or debit cards will actually work in Latin America. Check with your bank.

You should be aware that to purchase products or services on a credit card a fee of 5%-10% usually applies.

Do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money, a combination of US dollar cash and cards is best. Please bear in mind that cost of living in the southern cone countries (Argentina, Brazil, Chile) is much higher than the rest of South America, and in the case of Argentina, more comparable with Europe. Always take more rather than less, as you don't want to spoil the trip by constantly feeling short of funds.

We do not recommend bringing travellers cheques as they are very difficult to change in country.

CURRENCY EXCHANGE TIP: Please be advised that slightly torn notes, notes that have been heavily marked or are faded may be difficult to exchange. It is best to bring notes in fairly good condition, in denominations lower than 100USD (or equivalent).

As currency exchange rates can fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com

Emergency Fund

Please also make sure you have access to at least an additional USD $200 (or equivalent) as an 'emergency' fund, to be used when circumstances outside our control (ex. a natural disaster) require a change to our planned route. This is a rare occurrence!

Departure Tax

Most airlines include departure tax in the cost of the ticket. Please check with the airline with which you are travelling.

Tipping

It is customary in Latin America to tip service providers such as waiters, at approximately 10%, depending on the service. Tipping is an expected - though not compulsory - component of your tour program and an expression of satisfaction with the persons who have assisted you on your tour. Although it may not be customary to you, it is of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. There are several times during the trip where there is opportunity to tip the local guides or drivers we use. Recommendations for tipping drivers and local guides would range from $5-10 USD per day depending on the quality and length of the service; ask your CEO for specific recommendations based on the circumstances and culture.

Also at the end of each trip if you felt your G Adventures CEO did an outstanding job, tipping is appreciated. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline $20-25 USD per person, per week can be used.

Optional Activities

PERSONALIZE MY TRIP
Extras are specially designed for travellers with unique interests, they are optional add-ons to your G adventures trip that make your adventure more you-centric. Extras must be booked prior to departure.

Extras available on this trip:
IGUASSU FALLS BOAT RIDE
Feel the thunder of Iguassu Falls closer than you’ve ever imagined! Hop aboard a speedboat and prepare for an up-close-and-personal (and very, very wet) meet-and-greet with this incredible natural wonder.

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES:

Buenos Aires:
Tango Show 450 ARS
Tigre tour 310 ARS
Interactive Culinary Experience 85 USD
Coastal train 16 USD
Teatro Colón 130 ARS
City tour 20-25 USD
Fiesta Gaucha 780 ARS
Hop on Hop off Bus 170 ARS


Colonia:
Golf Car 15 USD per hour

Montevideo:
City Tour (half day) 35 USD
Punta Del Este Tour 50 USD
Bike rental (full day) 15 USD

Iguassu Falls:
Helicopter Tour 120 USD
Aventuras boat tour 450 ARS
Rafain Show 130 BRL
Paraguay Visit 25 BRL
Itaipu Dam 45 BRL
Bird park 50 BRL
Rapelling 70 BRL
Rafting 97 BRL

Paraty:
Jeep Tour 80 BRL
Caipirinha Boat 60 BRL
City walking tour 25 BRL - 5 pm is the only available time
Kayak Tours 80 BRL per person
Bike Rental 50 BRL/day
Famous Puppet show 40 BRL
Horseback Riding 130 to 150 BRL (depending on number of passengers)
Trindade Tour 70 BRL - leaves at 10 am

Ilha Grande:
Boat to Lopes Mendes beach 25 BRL
Surf Board Rental at Lopes Mendes 55 BRL
Guided walk to Pico do Papagagio 50 BRL

Rio de Janeiro:
Rio City Tour 175 BRL
Favela Tour 80 BRL
Favela Funk Party 70 BRL
Football Game 90-110+ BRL (depending on the match)
Corcovado 50 BRL
Sugar loaf 62 BRL
Samba show 55+ USD - Price is 120 BRL per person without dinner or transfer

All prices are per person in local currency, except where noted, and are subject to change as services are provided by third party operators. Please note that many optional activities will need to be paid in cash.

Health

Please note inoculations may be required for the country visited. It is your responsibility to consult with your travel doctor for up to date medical travel information well before departure.

You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information well before departure. We recommend that you carry a First Aid kit and hand sanitizers / antibacterial wipes as well as any personal medical requirements. Please be aware that quite often we are in remote areas and away from medical facilities, and for legal reasons our leaders are prohibited from administering any type of drug including headache tablets, antibiotics, etc. When selecting your trip please carefully read the brochure and itinerary and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please refer to the Physical and Culture Shock ratings for trip specific information. G Adventures reserves the right to exclude any traveller from all or part of a trip without refund if in the reasonable opinion of our CEO they are unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group.

Safety and Security

Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers' cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your CEO has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Your CEO will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your CEO will assist you with options available in a given location please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgment when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions.

Protests and Demonstrations- Protests and demonstrations, even those that are well intended, have the potential to turn violent with no warning. Counter protests can also turn violent. Action by security forces to disperse demonstrators and protesters may occur at any time. If you are in an area where demonstrators or protesters are gathering, avoid the temptation of staying for a good photo opportunity and leave the area immediately.

Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards) have a balanced approach to safety. It is our policy not to allow our CEOs to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s).

Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk.

We take all prudent measures in relation to your safety. For ways to further enhance your personal safety while traveling, please visit:


www.gadventures.com/travel-resources/safety/

Trip Specific Safety

You should be especially careful when wandering around Buenos Aires on your own, particularly at night. Tourists are easy prey for individual pickpockets or groups of two or more people, working as a team, on the streets. Pay particular attention to anyone who “accidentally” spills anything on your clothes or belongings (mustard, etc.), then apologizes and offers to help clean up. They will clean you out instead! Be safe and leave your passport, credit cards, traveller’s cheques and cash you won’t be using immediately within the hotel’s safety deposit box. Most Porteños are honest and genuinely helpful and friendly, but be safe and enjoy the city!

You should be especially careful walking around Rio de Janeiro on your own, particularly at night. It is very important to use common sense when in Rio as tourists can be easy targets. Do not walk down dark streets or go on the beach in the early hours of the morning. Be safe and leave your passport, credit cards, traveller’s cheques and cash you won’t be using immediately within the hotel’s safety deposit box. Keep your camera safe and valuable objects attached to you as there are many 'grab and run' thieves lurking about.

Medical Form

Our small group adventures bring together people of all ages. It is very important you are aware that, as a minimum, an average level of fitness and mobility' is required to undertake our easiest programs. Travellers must be able to walk without the aid of another person, climb 3-4 flights of stairs, step on and off small boats, and carry their own luggage at a minimum. Travellers with a pre-existing medical condition are required to complete a short medical questionnaire, which must be signed by their physician. This is to ensure that travellers have the necessary fitness and mobility to comfortably complete their chosen trip. While our CEOs work hard to ensure that all our travellers are catered for equally, it is not their responsibility to help individuals who cannot complete the day's activities unaided. Please refer to the physical ratings in this Trip Details document for more information.

The medical questionnaire can be found online at:

www.gadventures.com/medical-form
.

A Couple of Rules

Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter, and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our CEOs have the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.

Travel Insurance

Travel Insurance: Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your CEO, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy please bear in mind that all clients must have medical coverage and that we require a minimum coverage of USD 200,000 for repatriation and emergency rescue. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.

Planeterra-The G Adventures Foundation

Through our commitment to responsible tourism we have developed the Planeterra Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of people and communities around the world through support of international charities, local organizations and community projects in the places that we visit on our tours. G Adventures matches all individual donations and pays all administration costs, which means that 100% of each donation is doubled and goes directly to support our projects. For more information about Planeterra and the projects we support, or to make a donation, please visit www.planeterra.org

Planeterra Dollar-A-Day Program
Our Dollar-A-Day Program provides travellers with the opportunity to help us give back to the people and places visited on our tours by donating one dollar per day for the duration of their tour. 100% of these proceeds will go directly to support our Planeterra projects.

To participate in this program please indicate at the time of booking that you would like to participate in G Adventures’ Dollar-A-Day program, either by clicking the check box online, or by advising your G Adventures specialist or travel agent. (Note: Donation will be charged in the currency of your booking)

Feedback

After your travels, we want to hear from you! Your feedback information is so important to us that we'll give you 5% off the price of your next G Adventures trip if your feedback is completed on-line within 30 days of finishing your trip. Your tour evaluation will be e-mailed to you 24 hours after the conclusion of your trip. If you do not receive the tour evaluation link in the days after your tour has finished, please drop us a line at customerservice@gadventures.com and we will send it on to you.

Newsletter

Our adventure travel e-newsletter is full of travel news, trip information, interesting stories and contests. To avoid missing out on special offers and updates from G Adventures, subscribe at www.gadventures.com/newsletters/

Stay current on how our company invests in our global community through our foundation – Planeterra. Sign up for Planeterra's monthly news to learn more about how to give back and support the people and places we love to visit.

Travel Forum - The Watering Hole

Be sure to stop by The Watering Hole, our adventure travel forum. If you're interested in meeting others booked on your upcoming trip, check out the Departure Lounge section of our forum and introduce yourself. Otherwise, just drop in at anytime to share some travel tips, ask questions, meet other travellers and quench your thirst for travel. Our forum is located at wateringhole.gadventures.com.